Cristiano Ronaldo targeted Ryan Giggs when he joined Man Utd - Mike Phelan
CRISTIANO RONALDO wanted to be Manchester United's first-choice free-kick taker when he signed from Sporting Lisbon back in 2003, Mike Phelan has claimed.
Ronaldo, who is currently on international duty with Portugal at the World Cup, spent six years at Manchester United earlier in his career.
The Real Madrid forward signed as a raw teenager back in 2003, arriving from Sporting Lisbon after tearing the Red Devils apart in a pre-season clash.
Cristiano Ronaldo left, however, a United legend after firing them to three Premier League titles, as well as the 2008 Champions League title.
The Portugal star continues to make waves in Russia as he aims to inspire Portugal to a first-ever World Cup triumph.
And Phelan has revealed that Ronaldo immediately set himself the challenge of ousting Giggs from his free-kick duties.
"When Cristiano Ronaldo first arrived at Manchester United in 2003, Ryan Giggs was on free-kicks," he told the Daily Mail.
"But Cristiano took on challenges like nobody else. He always wanted to try something.
"He wanted to be the guy who found out through trying. He did it every day after training with Giggs and Wayne Rooney.
"The first challenge was to be better than his team-mates. He rose to that.
"Once he mastered it, he liked people to be around him watching it and talking about it."
Phelan also revealed Ronaldo would pit himself against the very best at the club at the time, including United legend Edwin van der Sar.
"He also insisted on doing it against the best goalkeepers," Phelan added.
"He wouldn't have a youth team goalkeeper in nets. He wanted to score against Edwin van der Sar.
"He spoke to the goalkeepers and asked about their psyche: finding out what they thought and what they found difficult."